Olympic Champion Uta Abe finished third at the All Japan Championships but is obviously selected for the World Championships in Tashkent from 6-13 October in Uzbekistan this year. Hibiki Shiraishi became Champion of Japan in the weight category U52kg. She defeated Nanako Tsubone in the final.
Haruka Funakubo prolonged last year’s title in Fukuoka. The final was against the experienced former World Champion Tsukasa Yoshida. Funakubo is a triple Junior World Champion. Momo Tamaoki finished with bronze.
Interesting was the battle U48kg between Funa Tonaki and Natsumi Tsunoda. It was Tonaki who won the gold. Both had not met before in an official match. Tsunoda steeped back from the U52kg weight class to U48 in 2019 and won the world title in 2021. Tonaki was in the Olympic final against Krasniqi last year and is a triple World championships medallist, World champion in 2017.
Some of the big names forfeited U63kg. Megumi Horikawa took the title there in the final against OParis winner Nami Nabekura.
Shiho Tanaka claimed the gold U70kg, always a strong category in Japan. She defeated Utana Terada in the final. World Championshuips finalist Yoko Ono finished with bronze in Fukuoka.
Also U78kg is strong. Olympic Champion Shori Hamada walked away with the gold and secured Tashkent. She overcame Rika Takayama in the final. 2015 World Champion Mami Umeki took bronze.
Wakaba Tomita grabbed the gold after Sarah Asahina tested positive on Covid-19. Tomita was also the champion in 2021.
The All Japan Judo Federation has announced the first names for the world championships in Tashkent. Seven names (out of nine) were announced. The holder of the +78kg will be designated after the Empress Cup.